This is a beautifully restored 1955 Alfa Romeo T10 “Autotutto” camper van that’s powered by its original supercharged diesel two-stroke engine.
The T10 “Autotutto” series of vans was introduced in 1954, it was a revolutionary design for the era that would have a significant impact on commercial van design in the decades to come.
Fast Facts – The Alfa Romeo T10 “Autotutto”
- The Alfa Romeo T10 Autotutto series of vans, also known somewhat confusingly as the Alfa Romeo Romeo, debuted in 1954 at the Turin Motor Show. The design was well ahead of its time, with four-wheel independent suspension, front wheel drive, and your choice of either a petrol twin cam four or a supercharged diesel.
- The use of front wheel drive meant that the T10 had a low, flat floor in the rear which maximized cargo space – it also allowed the wheelbase to be extended relatively easily if required. At the time of its introduction the T10 in both panel van and minibus variants, many other variants would soon follow.
- The handsome little Autotutto became a common sight on the streets of Italy, hauling cargo, fresh produce, and often people. In later years some of the surviving examples were converted into camper vans and used to explore Italy, Europe, and further afield.
- The 1955 Alfa Romeo T10 “Autotutto” you see here is a classic camper van conversion that is in remarkably well-throughout vintage specification. It had a dinette, a double bed, a sink with running water, and ample storage space.
The Alfa Romeo T10 Autotutto
When the Alfa Romeo T10 Autotutto debuted at the 1954 Turin Motor Show it must have seemed a little strange to attendees. It was a front wheel drive commercial van in a world of rear wheel drive vans, it had independent four-wheel suspension, and it was powered by either an advanced twin cam inline four, or a supercharged two-stroke diesel.
Looking back now we realize just how much of an influence the humble Alfa T10 had on both commercial and passenger van design in the years that followed, many modern production vans now have fuel efficient DOHC inline-fours, independent suspension, and optional forced-induction diesel offerings.
The key benefit of a front-engined, front wheel drive layout is that the van’s rear can have a low, flat floor which maximizes space for cargo. It also means that in passenger van configuration there is both more legroom and more headroom.
The T10 was developed with a steel chassis featuring transverse leaf spring suspension up front and transverse torsion bars in the rear. Drum brakes were fitted at all four corners, and the engine and transmission were fitted up front, accessible under a cover in the cab.
Rather than develop an all-new petrol engine for the van Alfa Romeo instead opted to use one of their tried and tested twin cam inline-fours – the same engine family found in the sporting Giulietta series. A compact two-cylinder, two-stroke diesel with Roots-type supercharger was also fitted as an alternative.
The 1.3 liter petrol engine produced 35 bhp and could push the van up to 60 mph (97 km/h), whereas the 30 bhp diesel was a little more sedate, offering a top speed of 47 mph (75 km/h). Power was sent through a 4-speed manual transmission to the front wheels, and no automatic option was ever offered.
Also known a little confusingly as the Alfa Romeo Romeo, the T10 was built over three major generations between 1954 and 1983, at which time it was succeeded by badge-engineered Fiat and Iveco commercial van models.
Due to the hard life that many of these vans lived, relatively few have survived to the modern day. As a result of this, they’re now becoming quite desirable in collector and enthusiast circles, and their values have been on the rise.
The 1955 Alfa Romeo T10 Camper Van Shown Here
The camper van you see here is a vintage conversion based on a 1955 Alfa Romeo T10. It was restored and converted to camper van specification in Italy, and it’s now one of the nicest retro campers we’ve ever featured on the site.
Remarkably, despite its age of almost 70 years, this van retains its original supercharged two-stroke diesel engine – a bit of an historical oddity now and something that’s sure to draw quite a bit of attention any time the engine cover is removed.
Inside you’ll find a green sofa that folds out into a double bed, there’s a sink with running water connected to onboard potable and grey water tanks. There is a foldable table, ample storage units, and a gas stove with a removable gas cylinder.
For improved headroom the camper has an elevated roof, and the front section of the roof above the cab has a small roof rack for storing a spare wheel – this is accessed via a foldable ladder finished in the same pale green as the two-tone exterior.
The vehicle rides on color-matched green wheels with chrome hub caps, it has chrome bumpers front and back, a rear roof access ladder, and that distinctive Alfa Romeo grill up front. Inside there are curtains on all windows for privacy in the evenings, two single seats up front in the cab, and it comes with a classic picnic hamper and a foldable camping table with seats.
It’s now due to roll across the auction block with Bonhams on the 1st of February with a price guide of €90,000 – €110,000 which works out to approximately $97,200 to $118,800 USD. If you’d like to read more about it or register to bid you can visit the listing here, it’s being offered with no reserve.
Images courtesy of Bonhams
Articles that Ben has written have been covered on CNN, Popular Mechanics, Smithsonian Magazine, Road & Track Magazine, the official Pinterest blog, the official eBay Motors blog, BuzzFeed, Autoweek Magazine, Wired Magazine, Autoblog, Gear Patrol, Jalopnik, The Verge, and many more.
Silodrome was founded by Ben back in 2010, in the years since the site has grown to become a world leader in the alternative and vintage motoring sector, with well over a million monthly readers from around the world and many hundreds of thousands of followers on social media.